ESPN has announced the sites for its first seven GameDay basketball programs in 2012. This year for the first time, the eighth and last site of the year (March 3) will have a flex option: Rece Davis, Jay Bilas, Digger Phelps, Hubert Davis and Bob Knight will be going to either Duke (for the North Carolina matchup) or to Kansas (where the Jayhawks host Texas).
The other games and sites are below.
Jan. 14: North Carolina at Florida State
Jan. 21: Louisville at Pittsburgh
Jan. 28: Washington at Arizona
Feb. 4: Kansas at Missouri
Feb. 11: Kentucky at Vanderbilt
Feb. 18: Ohio State at Michigan
Feb. 25: Syracuse at Connecticut
Mar. 3: North Carolina at Duke or Texas at Kansas
With the exception of the first game at Florida State, all the contests are scheduled night games. Defending champion UConn is one host. As is 2012 NCAA champion Vanderbilt *cough, total homer*. The rotation of games hits all the major conferences in this order: ACC, Big East, Pac 12, Big 12, SEC, Big 10, Big East again, and either ACC or Big 12.
“We worked to assemble the most exciting conference matchups for Saturday Primetime at sites we are confident will be enthusiastic and welcoming hosts for College GameDay,” said Nick Dawson, director of ESPN programming & acquisitions.
Butler, the team which finished as the NCAA runner-up the last two seasons, of course gets no love. Nor do any mid-major conferences — since, ya know, only big conference schools can be enthusiastic and welcoming hosts.